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The Importance of Organic | Final Draft

By: Jo Rejoicing [ChildOfGod]

    What does “organic” mean? What do all those little labels on your food packaging symbolize? Today I’m here to talk to you about the use of dangerous synthetic pesticides in agriculture and the importance of organic. 

     Billions of pounds of pesticides and herbicides are sprayed on crops every year. These pesticides are really toxic, and thousands of people die each year of pesticide poisoning. What’s more, both adults and children consume tons of pesticides every day. In fact, just by eating a non-organic apple or grape, you’re also eating 15 to 30 pesticides that were sprayed on the fruit. Eating chemicals doesn’t sound safe, does it? 

     I live in a very agricultural area of America. Around here, almost everyone is a conventional farmer. You could drive for miles before seeing anything besides corn, cows, and soybeans. When the farmers near us spray their crops, we have to stay inside. Here’s the question we should be asking: Why do we eat these chemicals if it’s dangerous to be outside with them? Why do we eat chemicals at all?  

    A lot of you probably already know about pesticides in food. But that’s not all. Cotton is a heavily sprayed crop, and it’s used for a lot of things, like clothes. You may spray your lawn with pesticides, exposing your pet to the chemicals. Cosmetic products usually contain ingredients sprayed with pesticides, too. Putting toxic chemicals on your body and in your hair doesn’t sound like something I’d want to do. 

    But we don't have to. We can make a difference. We can help and support organic farmers. This Earth is all we got. It's our responsibility to take care of it. But we can't do that if we're polluting it with toxic chemicals that harm people, plants, and animals. 

    That's why I believe in eating and growing organic. I’ve grown up eating organic food. My family always grows almost all of our own food, and our current gardens yield a lot of produce. But when the field across the road gets sprayed, the herbicides drift over to our gardens. Both my family and the local Amish community have lost plants because of herbicide drift. Farms today tend to be really dangerous places. There's the big machinery, the chemicals, and the animals kept in stinky pens. A farm is a source of food; it shouldn't be dangerous. 
    But my siblings and I don't have to worry about that. Our gardens are a safe place for us to be. We don't have to worry about stepping into a field that's just been sprayed with toxic chemicals because we grow organic. We don't have to worry about huge machines because we use small equipment. We don't have to worry about the smell of the animals because we keep them in clean pens. That's how it should be. Simple, clean, and safe. 

    So obviously, pesticides are a problem. But today, we can do better. It starts when you choose to buy organic food at the grocery store. It spreads when you share that organic food with others. Most of you, like me, probably don't want to feed your friends and relatives something poisonous. So why do it? We can support organic farmers by buying from them, and discourage non-organic farmers by avoiding the food they produce.

    Buying organic food may seem simple, but it makes a difference. You don’t have to be in a powerful position to be influential. You don’t have to be good at speaking to spread the word. All we have to do is get people to realize, then get them to care.

     The solutions to problems come after awareness and realization spread. Then people start to care. They start to want change. They fight for that change. Change doesn’t come unless you invite it. Solutions don’t appear unless you create them. Hope doesn’t occur unless you arouse it. 

     So today, I hope you realize how dangerous non-organic products really are, both for you and the environment. Today, I hope you realize that grocery shopping isn’t just a tedious and necessary task, it affects the world around you. Today, I hope you realize that your choice impacts the people, plants and animals around you. Whether you buy organic food or not may seem unimportant, but it makes a difference. What do you choose?

Word count: 720
Feedback is very much appreciated! I will try to return peer reviews! Thanks!

Message to Readers

Probably the last draft of this.

Peer Review

Everyone has heard the environmentalist activist say we need to eat organic to save the Earth, but you show us how we need to eat organic simply to save ourselves. Many people don’t realize how dangerous the food we eat is. You show us that eating organic is simply the safer, healthier option.

I, personally, never knew how dangerous the chemicals were. When you mentioned that you have to go inside while your neighbors are spraying, that shocked me. It seems very backwards to spray something on your crops that could hurt your neighbors by simply being around.

I already like your speech as it is, but if you were to add how the chemicals affect us when we eat them, it might make people feel even more apprehensive or repulsed towards eating non-organic foods.

I really like how you chose a topic that affects you, since you live right next to it. Sometimes issues like this can feel distant or like it’s someone else’s problem, but you made it feel closer to us. I really like it!!

Reviewer Comments

You did a great job with this! It is well written, and your use of rhetorical questions and obvious statements really makes the listener/reader feel like non-organic food is obviously dangerous. I like how you used personal examples, and even turned our picture perfect farm into something dangerous. You have a nice contract between YOUR farm and THEIR farm. Good look in the competition!